Medicare will cover a portion of your medical expenses if you plan accordingly. It is important to understand how Medicare works and to understand all the different plans available to you to be able to save the most money. Medicare Part A is free and covers any hospitalizations you may have. Medicare Part B helps to pay for doctor visits, some home health, equipment, procedures, and tests. Part B is not free for all. It may have some monthly premiums attached to it, depending on the income of the Medicare enrollee.
When someone has Medicare Part A and Part B, it gives them the option to be able to add other supplemental plans to their coverage. This includes Medicare Part D which assists with the costs of prescriptions. Depending on the location of the Medicare enrollee, Medicare will decide what options are available to them and how much it will cost to add a supplemental plan. To find the plans that are available to you, Medicare Part D Plan Finder can help.
Prescriptions can be very costly and easily eradicate a fixed income or budget. The average cost for Medicare Part D premium is 34 dollars nationwide. If you look at the numbers, it is easy to understand the necessity of having Part D. An emergency inhaler may cost about 200 dollars without prescription coverage. Should a person have prescription coverage, depending on the plan, it could be free or extremely low cost. That’s just an example of one prescription. If that same person needed maintenance medication, as well as the emergency medication, the cost of monthly medication could run into the thousands of dollars each month. Should there be medications that are not covered, it is possible for the doctor to do prior authorizations or to change the medication to one that is covered and affordable to you. Doctors will work with the Medicare tiers to keep prescription drug costs down for their patients.
Who Should Get Medicare Part D?
Medicare Part D is not just for people who are currently on medications. It is also a good safety net to have in case of future illness or disease. Adding the prescription coverage at the time of enrollment will save money further down the line. Diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, and/or complications with lungs need maintenance medication to assure a higher and longer quality of life. Although doctors will assess the risk to such diseases, it is possible to need medication in the future, even with a low-risk assessment. Having Medicare Part D will provide a safety net to keep you from having to pay astronomical costs for medications. The possibility of getting sick is always around. Should you need to take antibiotics or other similar types of medications, a prescription coverage plan will help to keep those costs down as well.
When deciding if Medicare Part D is appropriate for you, determine which medications you regularly take and then look at the plans. They will outline medications into tiers. Depending on which tier the medication falls into, it will determine the amount of money that medication will cost. Tier 1 and 2 will have the lowest cost medications and some are even free. Prescription drugs in these tiers are part of the reason why doctors will prescribe generic medications. The tiers are not the same for every plan at every company. It will vary. Choosing the plan that contains the medications that you are on at the lowest cost that is appropriate for the budget will save money overall. Comparing the plans will make this an easier process. However, there are time limits on this. Should you go over 63 days without choosing a plan, then there will be late penalties added to the monthly premium. This is avoidable if you sign up for Part D with Medicare Part A and Part B.
There are many Medicare enrollees who do not have the income to cover Medicare Part B or Part D. For those who cannot afford it, there is help. Applying for a low-income subsidy will change the premiums for the plans. It could even make the plans free. Make sure to check the criteria when applying for plans.